The way to create a Reconciliation Action Plan

Reconciliation Action Plans are about taking good intent and turning it into action.

The Black Lives Matter protests that have erupted across the globe have caused plenty of Australians to rethink the issues affecting Indigenous communities.

The health, wealth and employment gaps between Indigenous Australians and the rest of the population are well known, however the protests created new urgency to do something about them.

In July, the Australian government unveiled new Shut the Hole targets including reducing Indigenous incarceration rates.

For organisations that really feel the urgency act there is one apparent solution – a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).

In 2006, Reconciliation Australia introduced RAPs as a way for organisations to include strategic reconciliation initiatives as part of their business plans. The purpose of a RAP is to create meaningful opportunities on your organisation to actively help and recognise Indigenous Australians. Like many initiatives, reconciliation is a process that may evolve as you and your organisation start to take action.

RAPs are broken down into four maturity levels that replicate the place organisations are in their reconciliation journey. They are: Replicate, Innovate, Stretch and Elevate. Each has a corresponding RAP type organisations can pursue. For instance, the Innovate stage is for organisations that already understand where they can improve on Indigenous points and have begun taking motion to actively address them.

The first step for all organisations is to determine its maturity level. “Contact the RAP group at Reconciliation Australia and discover out which stage you’ll start at,” says Anthony. “The RAP workforce will send you a template that will outline what you have to do. There are some basic obligatory actions required by Reconciliation Australia resembling celebrating nationwide Reconciliation Day and rising knowledge of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures. After that, it’s in regards to the modifications you can make.”

Because a variety of organisations will start at the Mirror stage, this guide will outline the pillars you have to establish to start your reconciliation journey.


This is the place it all begins.

It will possibly help to look into why RAPs are so necessary as well as the current issues going through Indigenous people. Reports akin to Close the Gap can provide context to your RAP and may allow you to with the next step.

Safe help

A part of a profitable RAP is establishing assist for reconciliation initiatives across the whole organisation. In most cases this needs to start at the top.

“Most often I discover that if individuals are introduced with the details, they pretty quickly get on board with desirous to be part of the reconciliation movement,”

“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individuals are three per cent of the population. They’ll’t do the heavy lifting when it comes to change and infrastructure change, societal change, or altering attitudes.

“RAPs are a way of stepping in and making meaningful change.”

Over 1,000 organisations have formalised RAPs, and their implementation has had a real impact on improving employee understanding of Indigenous points, the Reconciliation Australia 2018 RAP Impact report found. This can have a flow-on effect. It makes employees more engaged with their community and they often choose to donate to, or volunteer with, Indigenous organisations as a result.

A RAP also solidifies your organisation’s commitment to creating a culturally safe work setting, which expands your recruiting pool by making your workplace a more attractive employer to Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander employees.

Establish a working group

The next step is to kind a working group that will oversee the complete RAP process. This group will have to be made up of various representatives from all sectors of your organisation.

The group is in charge of planning and implementing the RAP, so it will need to include members who have some precise power to make changes in the organisation, and members who understand it from a coverage and culture perspective.

Lastly, for the RAP to be really profitable, you’ll need involvement from members who work with prospects or shoppers, so that folks outside your organisation understand you are trying to make a difference.

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